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Fair Trade and You

Updated on April 27, 2011

fair trade

Fair Trade is a trading partnership: a partnership between individuals and communities that uses dialogue, transparency and respect, to evolve greater equity in international trade.

Fair Trade contributes to sustainable development because it offers better trading conditions to, and secures the rights of, marginalized producers and workers – especially in the South.

Fair Trade changes the relationship between seller and consumer and forges a new one that sees them both working towards the same goal, a just and sustainable society.

When people sell goods under the Fair Trade label they take that important first step towards improving their environment and enhancing their livelihood.

So what does all this have to do with you, well like me, we are consumers and consumers make many choice each and every day. For example, many of us begin our day with a cup of coffee or tea, some may even prefer hot chocolate, and well these three products are all available as Fair Trade products.

Love chocolate well there is a Fair Trade option. So you can choose when you enjoy a bit of chocolate or when having the first eye opening, brain engaging cup of deep and delicious coffee.

You can choose to be a part of the Fair Trade circle and see your purchase assist a coffee cooperative, for example, to thrive and the members provide a future for their children or you could follow the other route, it is a choice.

When the consumer purchases the Fair Trade item the circle is completed and a new consumer –producer relationships evolves.

If we look at coffee for example, when you purchase a fair trade coffee you are enabling a coffee cooperative in the coffee’s country of origin to collectively make their livelihood.

The cooperative works together to grown and market the coffee. Coffee companies, such as Justus Coffee in Nova Scotia, buy the beans from the coffee which is organically grown; a growing method that is good for the growers, the environment and the consumers.

Many fair trade coffee sellers also have tea, chocolate and sugar all fair trade and often organic items available. This diversifies the consumer’s choice and the suppliers’ product line.

When a consumer in Canada, where I live, walks into a shop that sells fair trade products such as coffee, tea or chocolate they are doing much more than buying those products.

As Global Exchange says the consumer who buys fair trade is part of this process

Bit by bit, fair trade coffee has made a tangible difference in many farmers’ lives. Children gain access to medical care and education, where before these services were non-existent. Much needed infrastructure is built, and progress against poverty is achieved. These advancements are being made because people in consumer countries realize that they can have a positive impact with the way they choose to spend their money. Fair Trade Certified coffee is a socially and environmentally responsible way to conduct trade between developed and developing countries.

As a consumer your decision to buy a Fair Trade item connects you directly with the producers desire to enjoy the benefits that a just and sustainable community provides. Fair Trade is a win-win relationship

fair trade

fair trade


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  • profile image

    global fayre 9 years ago from

    Great hub - I only just found it.

    Global Fayre is a fair trade store in Springfield, MO. We have loads of great Fair Trade coffees and other fair trade gourmet foods plus artisan products from all over the world.

  • profile image

    Sheila 9 years ago

    Yes I agree but I think free trade could have been, and should have been much more effective.

    It should not have destroyed the trade base and the job market here in the US.

    We are changing over to a internet marketing society and those who have

    worked at minimal and blue collar jobs are having their worlds turned up side down.

    I have a launched a Free teaching website for those who which to learn how to

    create their own job.

  • Bob Ewing profile image

    Bob Ewing 9 years ago from New Brunswick

    a chocolate tasting club, how delightful, thanks for the comment.

  • tjmum profile image

    tjmum 9 years ago from Isle of Wight

    I try my hardest to buy fair trade goods. There is a chocolate tasting club here in the UK and they support smaller growers and the environment even if it does make the goods a little pricey. The taste is out of this world too.

  • Bob Ewing profile image

    Bob Ewing 9 years ago from New Brunswick

    well it was morning coffee time and we drink fair trade organic coffee and yesterday was World Fair Trade Day so...

  • Eileen Hughes profile image

    Eileen Hughes 9 years ago from Northam Western Australia

    Go Fair trading then thats for sure. Where did the gardening and relaxation go...

    Good hub thanks Bob